Walk-on QB Earns Praise From Auburn Coach

Brent Poole turned down scholarships to have a chance to be on the Auburn football team.

Auburn, Ala.--One of the more impressive new walk-ons for the 2008 Auburn football team is a quarterback from Troy who has good size, a good arm and a strong desire to play football for the Tigers.

"It is a lot of fun being out here playing football on the Auburn team," says Brent Poole, a 6-2, 216-pounder out of Charles Henderson High School. "It is a dream come true."

He wanted to play for Auburn enough to turn down a scholarship to Millsaps College in Mississippi to walk on at AU. Then after he met with Auburn offensive coordinator Tony Franklin and made plans to come to Auburn, he got an offered to play for the Division I Memphis Tigers.

"I was actually here in Auburn getting my apartment when Memphis had a quarterback go with baseball," Poole says. "My high school coach told me Memphis had called and told me that they wanted me, but I turned them down because I said I was going to Auburn because that is where my heart is."

A two-year starter at Charles Henderson, Poole says he threw for approximately 1,700 yards as a senior with 24 touchdowns.

"My junior year we ran something kind of similar to Coach Franklin's offense with a little difference in formations and different names," Poole says. "My senior year we lined up in a lot of pro sets with tight ends and played smash-mouth football. I am pretty familiar with the Auburn offense from my junior year and we ran some of it my senior year."

Franklin says he is glad to have Poole on board, especially after having a shortage of QBs in the spring to run some of his favorite drills that include five passes in the air at the same time.

"It has been a tremendous help to have a fifth quarterback," Franklin says. "Brent has really been a pleasant surprise. I knew he could throw it well because his highlight tape was pretty good and I knew he was a good kid because my daughter, Caitlin, knew him and they went to school together.

"He has really done a good job of filling that role of doing all the dirty things knowing he is not going to play," Franklin points out. "He has really been effective throwing the ball on the routes. There is not a step off when he throws so we have been have been really pleased. He has been a huge asset for us."

Brent Poole is shown during a break at practice this week.

Franklin adds, "I heard at the last moment that somebody came in and offered him, but he was an Auburn guy and that is where he wanted to go. Once he knew that he could play here and be on the team, I think USC could have offered him and he would have still been here. This is where he wants to be."

Poole agrees with Franklin and says he is glad he came to Auburn. "It has been a lot of fun being on the team," he says.

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